Wild plant whose toxic sap ‘eats away at your skin’ spreading through Midwest

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ILLINOIS - A poisonous plant is popping up in Illinois and other states across the Midwest.

"Wild parsnip" is most commonly found in open fields, roadside ditches, along bike trails and in prairie areas. The weed has lacy, yellow-green heads similar to wildflowers.

It can look like wild dill or Queen Anne's Lace but if you touch it you can end up in the emergency room. Chemicals in the parsnip's sap cause severe reactions when exposed to skin and sunlight. Effects can last for weeks, and scars can last for years.

The plant typically flowers between May and July, and can grow from six inches to six feet tall.